Principal's Newsletter 9/22/2023

Sellwood Principal’s Newsletter – September 22, 2023

Greetings Sellwood Community,

The school year is well underway and going very smoothly.  Checking in with students and staff, I have noted a lot of smiles and positive responses.  I have been made aware of one bus that is consistently late in the mornings.  My apologies about the bus.  I have reached out to Transportation for an explanation, but it seems the issue has not yet been resolved.  Over the past two weeks we have also experienced the challenges of an aging school building.  Sellwood Middle School was built in 1914, and while it is a beautiful old building, this week it has been showing its age.  On Tuesday, deep in the rooms under our building, one of our older building fans burned out.  While there was no fire, smoke, or actual danger, the fan pushed a burning odor into the school’s main areas, alarming students and staff and prompting an evacuation.  The fan is being replaced.  It took a bit of time to uncover the source of the odor, but I wanted to share its origin, as I had heard rumors being passed around about a gas leak (not true at all).  In addition to the old fan burning out, the water station nearest the main office has a clogged drain.  While we have closed the water station (as well as the station above it) until it is repaired, I want to reassure everyone that there is not a problem with the water quality, which is highly filtered and has been tested.  The water station can’t be used because the water has no place to go, due to the drain blockage.  It should be fixed in the next few days, but I ask for your patience.  I am very much looking forward to the day when Sellwood has its turn for school modernization.

Speaking of school modernization, I am sure you know that Cleveland High School is in line for redesign.  PPS is currently putting together the Cleveland Comprehensive Planning Committee (CPC).   Most Sellwood students will attend Cleveland as their neighborhood high school, and the work of the CPC will have great impact on current Sellwood students and families.  Below, under Help Us Create A Modernized Cleveland High School there is a description of the CPC’s work and an invitation to apply and a link to the CPC application.  They are interested in current Sellwood families and students.  I encourage you to get involved in this exciting work!

Finally, a reminder that next Tuesday evening Sellwood will host Back-to-School Night from 5:30 to 7PM, followed by the first PTA Meeting in the library from 7:00 to 8:30. The schedule and details are outlined below.  We hope to see you there!

Enjoy the weekend :-)


Jeandré Carbone

Sellwood MS Principal


  1.        First PTA Meeting Tuesday, 9/26 7pm at Back to School Night

Please join us for our first PTA meeting of the year.  We will meet from 7-8:30pm in the SMS library after Back to School Night events.  We would love to see you!  Principal Carbone will be sharing information about the new roles at Sellwood such as the Restorative Justice Coordinator and School Climate Specialist.  She will also be discussing the changes in the Advisory curriculum this year. 

  1. Don’t forget to sign up for the PTA!

We have had 23 people join the PTA so far.  Our goal is 50. Please join the PTA and help make this a great school year for our kids and SMS community.  Here is the link to join! 

  1. Are you on Konstella? 

The PTA uses the Konstella app to keep the parent community up to date with scheduled events, the school calendar, volunteer sign ups and PTA announcements. Here is the link to join!  Already on Konstella?  Please update your student’s grade.

  1. Find us on social media!

Instagram: @sellwoodmiddlePTA




We invite you to join our year-long fundraising initiative --**Blue Bag BottleDrop**! Last year, Blue Bag BottleDrop contributed over $6,000 to our school, making a significant impact on our programs.

 **What's Blue Bag BottleDrop?** 
Blue Bag BottleDrop is a simple and effective way to support our school. Collect cans, bottles, or any deposit-marked containers in the Blue Bags provided. These bags are convenient and versatile – use them at home, the office, sports events, or any gathering with bottled or canned beverages.

 **Easy Drop-Off Locations** 
No more waiting in line for payment slips! You can drop off your filled Blue Bags hassle-free at various local BottleDrop locations, including New Season's, Trader Joe's, and QFC.

 **Get Your Blue Bag** 
Pick up your Blue Bags at the Main Office or designated locations within the neighborhood ( Look out for the SMS Foundation Board at the upcoming Back to School Night – we will be distributing Blue Bags and answering any questions you might have.

Let's make this year's Blue Bag BottleDrop program an even greater success! Thank you for your continued support in enhancing our school's opportunities and experiences.

See you at Back to School Night!


On Tuesday, September 26th, we will welcome families to our annual Back-to-School Night.  We will start at 5:30 PM with a brief presentation in the gym, followed by a shortened bell schedule where parents will follow their children’s schedules and get to meet their teachers and hear about their classes.  We will not be handing out paper copies of students’ schedules, so please make sure you can access your child’s schedule through ParentVue on a mobile device.  Student leaders will be posted in hallways to help direct families.  Here is the schedule for the evening.

  • 5:30-5:50 – Parent Presentation in Gym
  • 5:55-6:02 - Period 1
  • 6:06-6:13 - Period 2  
  • 6:17-6:24 - Period 3 or 4 
  • 6:28-6:35 - Period 5 
  • 6:39-6:46 - Period 6
  • 6:50-6:57 - Period 7

We hope to see you there!


Dear Cleveland High School & Cleveland Cluster Families,

The comprehensive planning process for the modernization of historic Cleveland High School is getting underway. PPS is seeking a diverse range of engaged citizens who can positively contribute to the process of creating a next generation high school through the Cleveland Comprehensive Planning Committee (CPC).  View the Cleveland CPC flyer here |Español |Tiếng Việt | Русский Soomaali | 中文

Cleveland Comprehensive Planning Committee Mission
The goal of the Cleveland CPC is to develop an equitable and integrated comprehensive plan for a modernized Cleveland High School through authentic community engagement. It will include students, parents, teachers, alumni, administrators, PPS staff, partners, community representatives and a school board member.

The CPC collects and synthesizes community-wide input and collaborates around the evolving project details with other members in the Cleveland community. While CPC members are not tasked with making final decisions, their input is crucial in creating a comprehensive plan that the entire community can be proud of.  

Apply to the Cleveland Comprehensive Planning Committee (CPC)
To apply please visit the Cleveland Modernization website at Applications are available in all PPS supported languages. Paper applications will also be available at Cleveland High School and upon request. Interested candidates should plan on meeting about once a month in the evenings for about 5 to 6 months.  The CPC application process will remain open until the 28th of September, but please get them in as soon as you can. The first meeting will take place in early October.

Other Engagement Opportunities
If you are unable to join the CPC, you will still have opportunities to make your voice heard at upcoming Design Workshops and Open Houses. Dates will be announced on the website.

Cleveland Modernization Schedule
Planning and Design is set to begin in early fall of 2023 with the development of a Cleveland Comprehensive Plan. The Planning and Design phase will continue over the next two years. Funding for the construction of a modernized Cleveland would need to come from a future bond measure.

Get involved and stay informed
The Cleveland modernization website will keep you updated on the latest developments and provide a list of upcoming engagement opportunities. You can also join the Cleveland Modernization project mailing list at  Thank you for helping us create a modernized Cleveland High School for the 21st century.


Who wants a yearbook at the end of the year?  It turns out, pretty much everybody wants one!  Each year, we set aside some time for students to commemorate the end of the school year with a yearbook signing ritual.  However, not everyone orders a yearbook, often because they are busy and don’t realize until after the ordering deadline.  Sometimes students don’t think they want a yearbook, but when they see them, they realize they really do want one.  The truth is, there are many reasons why families don’t order yearbooks, and we never have enough yearbooks for everyone who wants one.  We do not like to disappoint students and families.  So, what if we ordered yearbooks for every student?    In fact, if we order more yearbooks, the price per book will go down.  We envision the last day of school when every student has a yearbook to sign!  However, we will need your support in order to make this sustainable.  We are requesting a suggested $20 donation to our Sellwood Yearbook Donation account in School Pay (the price for a yearbook was $25 last year).  You can donate more, especially if you have more than one child at Sellwood.  We hope that our “Yearbooks for All” plan will make for a more enjoyable and equitable end of the year experience for all.  Thank you for your support.

Here's the link to SchoolPay.  If you need assistance with SchoolPay, the SchoolPay parent help

phone number is 833-731-2600.

Youth Cheer Clinic October 2nd-5th, with a half time performance at the Homecoming Football game on the 6th. Practices will be held at the Cleveland track. 

Students will learn a dance and some cheers that they will perform at halftime of the homecoming game. We are also asking all the participants to cheer with us down on the track, for the first half of the game. 

Grades: 4th - 8th

Fee:  $50 - it includes a t-shirt and a bow.

Registration: Sign up is located on the Cleveland High School Athletic website under fall sports - cheer. Below is the google doc form.


Parents, if you would like to support your student by logging into Canvas, here is a link and a step-by-step guide.



  • You will need to create a Canvas account using a student pairing code. 
  • Accounts can be created by going to
  • Review this guide to learn more.


Students with last names A-L: Mr. KB –

Students with last names M-Z:  Ms. Katie –


The best way to reach us is by email.  

  • Melissa Whiteside ( is our school secretary and registrar.  
  • Claire Howard ( is our principal’s secretary and bookkeeper.
  • Our Sellwood website ( has many “Quick Links” to help you immediately.   

The Office Phone Number

The office phone number is 503-916-5656.  

When prompted:

  • press 4 for Melissa;
  • press 3 for Claire 
  • press 2 for all Attendance matters. 
  • press 5 for Records, Registration.
  • press 0 for the front counter; however, students may answer this line.  Do not discuss anything confidential or leave any confidential messages.  

Secured Building 

Sellwood is a locked and secure building.  

Please ring the doorbell to the right of the main doors to reach the office.  We will guide you accordingly.

Parent/Student Requests:  

Please email both Melissa and Claire for student pick up or if you must get a message to a student.  For student pickup, advance notice is strongly recommended to minimize classroom interruptions. No pickups/dismissals will be allowed after 3:30 pm.

Guides to Help you:

To access your student’s attendance in Synergy: Log into ParentVue. 

To make changes to your student’s registration in Synergy:  ParentVue/StudentVue

Please email Melissa Whiteside ( for:

  • Passwords:  If you have forgotten your password, have been locked out of your account, or do not have login credentials
  • ParentVue (if your account has been disabled).   


Please email Claire Howard ( for:

  • School Pay/Bookkeeping/accounting issues.
  • Administrative Support:  Messages or matters of support to the principal or assistant principal.



  • September 26: Back to School Night 5:30-7:00 PM
  • September 26: PTA Meeting 7PM
  • September 27: Picture Day
  • October 4: Two-hour late opening.  Entry bell rings at 11:05 AM
  • October 13: No School – State In-service Day
  • October 25: Cleveland Arts Assembly
  • November 2: End of Quarter 2
  • November 3: No School for Students
  • November 8: Picture Retakes
  • November 10: No School – Veteran’s Day
  • November 20-21: Parent Teacher Conferences
  • November 22-24:  Fall Break
  • December 18-22: Winter Break


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